ICC World Cup | Start match at 11.30 AM to eliminate dew factor, appeals R Ashwin

ICC World Cup | Start match at 11.30 AM to eliminate dew factor, appeals R Ashwin

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Ravichandran Ashwin proposed changes to the upcoming World Cup to minimize the importance of dew



Ravichandran Ashwin has highlighted dew's role in cricket games in Asian conditions and suggested shifting the timings for day/night games to solve the issue. The veteran talked about the problem in the context of the ongoing ODI series in India and the way teams are preparing for the World Cup.

The ICC ODI World Cup is scheduled to return to Asia after a hiatus of 12 years with the marquee tournament set to be held in India later in the year. The last time the country hosted the event, they had emerged triumphant in 2011 and look like strong contenders once again for the upcoming edition. However, in such tournaments, a lot can often come down to luck as was best displayed by the final in 2019 by England and New Zealand. Thus, in a bid to ensure the most meritious team ends up triumphant, Indian veteran Ravichandran Ashwin has appealed to the global authority International Cricket Council to modify the timings of games to deal with the due factor.
Ashwin's comments came following India's 67-run triumph over Sri Lanka in the first ODI of a three-match series in Guwahati. After the Men in Blue put on a clinical batting display to post 373, their efficiency with the ball had the Lions reeling at 206/8 with 12 overs to go. However, as the game proceeded, temperatures kept falling in the Day/Night affair thereby increasing dew and as a result, the hosts emerged winners by only 67 runs courtesy of a century by opposition skipper Dasun Shanaka.
"India batted beautifully on a slow wicket and posted a score well above par. Still they ended up having to fight tooth and nail [to win]. The quality difference between the teams isn't coming through - dew is narrowing that gap if you happen to lose the toss," Ashwin was quoted saying by ESPNCricinfo.
Ashwin stated ODIs should be preponed by two hours in order to reduce the impact dew has on games while highlighting how the aura of the World Cup would ensure people tune in regardless of the time.
"My suggestion - or rather my opinion - for the World Cup is to look at what venues we are playing in, and at what times. Why shouldn't we start matches at 11.30am during the World Cup? People will bring up television viewers and broadcasters, and say that people won't latch on and watch at that time, but would they not latch on to World Cup matches?" he asked. "The recent T20 World Cup was also held in winter, prioritising the summer [for Australia's home bilateral season]. It wasn't the ideal scenario - T20 is a fast-paced game, how can you play it in winter? People will say that's not the case in Australia, but still, we need to prioritise World Cups," Ashwin explained.
"The ICC knows very well that there will be dew, so let's advance the game, and if we start at 11.30am, the dew factor won't come into the game, and why not? Won't all cricket fans prioritise the World Cup and watch matches at 11.30?" he added.
The debate had previously arisen at the end of the 2021 World T20 as well in the United Arab Emirates where the toss seemingly decided affairs without a ball even being bowled on numerous occasions. Ashwin revealed teams have grown wary of such tactics, thus increasing the importance of radical cahnges.
"ECB recently invited applications for the analyst's position, and - I came to know this through some analysts I know - one of the important questions they asked was, 'How big a factor is dew in Indian conditions in white-ball cricket?' They're looking to bring in the best analytical tools possible ahead of the 2023 World Cup, and they've asked all the pertinent questions, so you can see how crucial everyone in world cricket thinks the dew factor is in Indian conditions."

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